RY2014-1 Project Update uri icon

DCO ID 11121/9731-2653-7979-9971-CC

Date Submitted

  • 2014-08-31

Update Text

  • A third Sloan award (APS Grant 2014-06-01) began 1 July 2014 to continue the the operation of the DCO Secretariat and associated activities in DCO Years 6 and 7 (specific activities are outlined in the current project description).

    In DCO Years 4 and 5, the second Sloan award (APS Grant 2012-06-01 which ends 31 December 2014) supported DCO Secretariat operations, several new scientific and management initiatives, numerous meetings and workshops, and small but key contributions to leveraged field and research initiatives. Following an August 2013 reprogramming, this grant also has helped support operation of the DCO science communities by providing management, travel, and scientific support (for staff and postdocs). Notably, Grant 2012-06-01 also supported an important DCO publication, "Carbon in Earth," and a large International DCO Science Meeting at the U.S. National Academy of Sciences (March 2013) where "Carbon in Earth" was introduced to decision-makers and scientists with a public press release and reception.

    The first major Sloan award to the DCO Secretariat (APS Grant 2009-6-05) provided the support necessary to implement the DCO vision described in the original grant proposal for DCO Years 1-3. The current DCO structure is not exactly as first envisioned but the four scientific communities (that emerged through 2010 community-building workshops) are actively attacking the scientific tasks outlined by the original DCO proposal. A significant portion of the initial Secretariat grant ($1,500,000) was reprogrammed to support the launch and development of the four science communities (initially referred to as Directorates): Deep Life, Reservoirs and Fluxes, Extreme Physics and Chemistry, and Deep Energy. The subawards to support the individual DCO community efforts were set up during 2011, but subawardee institutions required all funding to be in place before any post-doctoral positions could be advertised and filled, a process that incurred more delays than expected. Funds were subsequently reprogrammed from the second DCO Secretariat grant 2012-06-01 (DCO Years 4-5) to cover these extended DCO community commitments until 31 December 2014. This reprogramming released funds in Grant 2009-06-05 that were in turn reprogrammed to cover an extensive amount of DCO expenditures such as salaries and meetings in Years 4 and 5 in order to produce cost savings in Grant 2012-06-01 to honor the community commitments.

    Instrumentation tasks from the original Secretariat proposal continue to be pursued by the DCO—with funds from the Secretariat grant as well as from two targeted instrumentation awards from Sloan (APS 2010-06-04 and APS 2012-03-01) combined with leveraged support from other sources. Also, as outlined in the original proposal, five tasks were directly supported with the grant: (1) international workshops, (2) fundraising efforts, (3) cooperative agreements, (4) establishment of a Secretariat to coordinate activities, and (5) public outreach and engagement. During Year 4, the Secretariat also continued to maintain a DCO website launched in Year 1 and produce a monthly newsletter while, behind the scenes, the program underwent a major metamorphosis. Specifically, the DCO Communications and Engagement Team hosted by the University of Rhode Island and the DCO Data Science Team hosted at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute—established with direct support from Sloan—were ramping up to become fully operational. The rebranded DCO—with a new logo, a new website (deepcarbon.net), and a revamped DCO newsletter, From the Deep—was introduced to the world in March 2013.